E3 is nearing its conclusion, and announcements are still coming. Nintendo announced today at its Treehouse presentation that Donkey Kong and the obscure arcade title, Sky Skipper, are coming to the Switch under the Arcade Archives banner. Donkey Kong is already available to download. Sky Skipper will be released in July.
#ArcadeArchives Donkey Kong is the first-ever release of the complete arcade version outside of arcades, and it’s available now on #NintendoSwitch #eShop! https://t.co/vzeeHxnZoZ pic.twitter.com/7YQh3h7JMT— Nintendo of America (@NintendoAmerica) June 14, 2018
Donkey Kong is a game that needs no introduction. But, there is something monumental about this release: it is the first time the original arcade version has been re-released. The Treehouse presentation showed the Arcade Archives Donkey Kong in action. The main menu presents three options: Early Version (the original Japanese release), Later Version (bugs from the original release were fixed), and the International Version, which is the one Americans are most familiar with. Arcade Archives Donkey Kong will have a high-score mode as well, so players around the world can compete for the highest score. Donkey Kong is available to purchase for $7.99.
Meanwhile, Sky Skipper is an even more interesting story. The game was released in 1981, the same year as Donkey Kong. Sky Skipper never attained that level of success sadly, and has never been released outside Nintendo's home country. The cabinet's artwork was done by Donkey Kong and Super Mario Bros. creator Shigeru Miyamoto, longtime Nintendo of America employee, Don James, confirmed at Nintendo Treehouse. Sky Skipper has the player control a plane piloted by a character named Mr. You, and the goal is to collect these little characters. It looks simplistic, but fun. Now, audiences outside Japan will be able to play this obscure title. It will be released sometime next month. Of course, the question has to be asked: once Sky Skipper gains prominence, could we see Mr. You as a DLC character for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate?
Arcade Archives is a solid thing to have on Switch. In some ways, it is a Virtual Console (though not as expansive) with the added feature of high scores. Vs. Super Mario Bros., Mario Bros., and PUNCH-OUT!! have been available. Adding another prestigious game like Donkey Kong is a great thing for longtime Nintendo enthusiasts, and newcomers. Playing for the high score will be similar to those days in the '80s arcades. Meanwhile, many of us have never played, or even seen Sky Skipper. It will be a good novelty to play a rare game from Nintendo's past. (Plus, you will have a chance to be the champion thanks to online leaderboards.) It looks like Nintendo is once again doing unique things for its fans.